ISSN: 1899-0967
Polish Journal of Radiology
Established by prof. Zygmunt Grudziński in 1926 Sun
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vol. 83
Original paper

The role of diffusion and perfusion magnetic resonance imaging in differentiation of haemangioblastomas and pilocytic astrocytomas

Małgorzata Neska-Matuszewska
Anna Zimny
Joanna Bladowska
Anna Czarnecka
Marek Sąsiadek

© Pol J Radiol 2018; 83: e197-e203
Online publish date: 2018/05/10
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Haemangioblastomas (HABLs) and pilocytic astrocytomas (PAs) are brain tumours presenting similar appearance and location in conventional magnetic resonance (MR) imaging. The purpose of our study was to determine whether a detailed analysis of diffusion (DWI) and perfusion (PWI) characteristics can be useful in preoperative differentiation of these tumours.

Material and methods
The study group consisted of biopsy proven six HABLs and six PAs, which underwent preoperative standard MR examinations including PWI and DWI. In PWI relative cerebral blood volume (rCBV) and the shape of perfusion curves (parameters of peak height – rPH and percentage of signal recovery – rPSR) were analysed. All perfusion parameters were measured for the entire tumour core (mean rCBV, mean rPH, mean rPSR) and in regions with maximal values (max rCBV, max rPH, max rPSR). In DWI parameters of apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) from the entire tumour core (mean ADC) and in regions with minimal values (min ADC) were evaluated.

Compared to PAs, HABLs presented significantly higher rCBV and rPH values and lower mean rPSR value. PAs showed significantly lower rCBV and rPH values and higher mean rPSR value. Mean rCBV showed no overlap in the values between HABLs and PAs, and thus it provided the highest accuracy in differentiating between them. Max rPSR, mean ADC, and min ADC did not show any significant differences.

High rCBV values and deep perfusion curves with only partial return to the baseline are characteristic features of HABLs differentiating them from PAs, which show lower rCBV values and perfusion curves overshooting the baseline. Diffusion parameters are not useful in differentiation of these tumours.


PWI, DWI, haemangioblastoma, pilocytic astrocytoma

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